Written by Alyssa Burley.
On February 19th, March 10th, 19th and 24th, Project Cornerstone conducted four of five scheduled field trips to Hanson Aggregates' Santee Rock Quarry at the Sycamore Landfill in Santee, CA. The final field trip for the 2014-2015 school year will take place on Monday, April 20, 2015.
On each field trip, Eric Inouye from Hanson Aggregates and Gabe Gonzales from Republic Services led sixty sixth-grade students from Cajon Valley Middle School, on a tour of the landfill and rock quarry site.
Shane Hancock, Nick Qualin, Eddie Chapman, John Portlock and Trisha Moore from Hanson Aggregates, and Crystal Howard, Alyssa Burley and James DeCarolis from Project Cornerstone, assisted with the field trip. They guided students as they rotated through three stations where they learned how to perform a gradation analysis on sample materials, made concrete, and learned about the heavy equipment used to mine rocks at the quarry.
Using a mechanical sieve to separate the rocks into various sizes, the student were able to evaluate the data, calculate percentages, and determine if the sample met the material specifications.
Students learned about the materials needed to make concrete (i.e., sand, gravel, cement and water), where quarries are located relative to their school, and then they made small batches of concrete. The students poured their concrete mixtures into silicone molds of footballs, trucks, butterflies, flowers and other fun shapes. Once the concrete was cured, they were returned to the students to take home.
Each student was able to sit in the cabs of loaders and a concrete truck. They asked questions about how the equipment worked and had their individual photos taken. After the field trip, students were given the photos to take home.
Sycamore Landfill and Rock Quarry
Hanson Aggregates is the quarry operator who extracts and crushes the stone from the Sycamore Landfill quarry site. The crushed stone is then used to make construction materials that build and maintain the community’s infrastructure (e.g., roads, bridges, schools and homes).
Republic Services operates the landfill. The voids left from the stone extraction are filled with the community’s refuse.
By-products from the quarry (i.e., dirt, aka yellow fill) are used to cover the refuse in the landfill.
It’s a perfect partnership - the crushed stone is removed from the site to build and maintain our infrastructure, while making room to dispose of our community’s refuse.
Photos by Alyssa Burley.